cervesaebraciator writes: The Guardian reports that the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) has arrested two men from Birmingham and have seized "suspected counterfeit DVD box sets worth around £40,000, including titles such as Game of Thrones, CSI and Vampire Diaries." The claim is that the men were buying foreign counterfeit copies and selling them online as genuine. London police commissioner Adriad Leppard offers commentary indicative of the thinking behind these efforts, saying, "Intellectual property crime is already costing our economy hundreds of millions of pounds a year and placing thousands of jobs under threat, and left unchecked and free to feed on new technology could destroy some of our most creative and productive industries." The article offers £51 billion per month as an estimate for the cost of illegal downloading to the music, film, and software industry, a figure they say will triple by 2015. To give a sense of scale here, according to IMF numbers the nominal 2012 GDP of the UK was roughly $2.4 trillion (or about £1.5 trillion at the current exchange rate). Following the estimates used here to justify the PIPCU, the total cost of piracy to the music, film, and software industry should be £1.836 trillion, i.e. larger than the British economy in 2012.
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